Today Maicen and I went to buy his first school uniform. How did this even happen?! When did my little baby turn into a big boy? These are the famous words of every mother but it’s honestly so true.
I didn’t know what to expect from today, but I knew it had to be done, as I’d already left it ridiculously late. So much so, that when I called the uniform store yesterday, they told me they were very low on stock and weren’t expecting a delivery until the end of September!
Maice had told everyone at the nursery that he was going to buy his “unicorn today.” To him that meant a lunchbox and pencils, which I only realised when I pulled up to the shop and he was asking why we were there. Heart sink moment for me. I should have actually sat him down and explained what exactly a uniform or “unicorn,” as he put it, is, as he’s much happier going along with a plan when he knows what it is.
So we went in to the shop and thankfully at 10.30am it wasn’t too busy. They knew exactly what I needed and I too went with a checklist provided by the school, as I know how easily I can get carried away with buying things we don’t need.
The first thing they got out was the polo shirt and Maicen’s immediate response was to kindly decline trying it on. I eventually managed to persuade him to get it on but I knew that would be the only thing he would try on without all hell breaking loose in the shop. I accepted that and didn’t want to push my luck, so the rest was pretty easy. I held the trousers against his waist, which he wasn’t too keen on doing initially but then we came to a compromise, as he was allowed to play with the ball in the shop if he was a good boy.
I ended up buying:
4 x Polo shirts : 3 were recommended but I thought that I’d rather get an extra one so he always has a spare in his bag. I tend to do a couple of washes a week as well so he should have a fresh shirt daily.
2 x Sweat shirts
2 x trousers
1 x shorts (September can be quite warm so I would rather he be comfortable than hot and sticky in trousers.
School sun hat, which is required for playtime and PE.
Scarf, gloves and woollen hat : of all the things we bought, he insisted on wearing all three of these and keeping them on. Bear in mind that it was a hot day today with the sun blazing and my little cheeky man was walking around with jeans and a t-shirt on, accessorised with Winter essentials. He was happy enough though, so, so was I.
I bought one PE kit (I can always get another if needed later)
He needs white trainers as well for PE so I’m going to make do with the ones he has, which are both comfortable and easy for him to put on and take off (I love Velcro straps!). I’ve decided to buy him a new pair for general use instead of buying a new pair for PE.
Black shoes – Well of course it has to be Clarks. We walked in to a heaving shop with children and parents patiently waiting for their ticket number to be called. I took a ticket and was told there were 4 people in front of me but 8 people serving. So 10 minutes later, we’re being served. I’d already chosen the shoes in that time so it was just a case of measuring his feet and trying them on. They have lovely, comfortable shoes there but I know that as Maice has really thin ankles, he needs shoes that have good support and have Velcro, to make them as tight fitted as possible. We were literally in and out of there in 20 minutes. Well done to Clarks for appreciating how difficult it can be to get your child in a shoe shop. I applaud them for having a good number of efficient staff working to make the process as smooth as possible.
My top tips just from personal experience today:
- Tell your little monsters what you have planned for the day so they know what to expect.
- Be reasonable in your expectations. You know your child better than anyone so work with them and compromise. If you know they’re not going to sit there and try everything on (which would be fantastic in an ideal world), then wisely select what the most important things to try on are.
- Take a couple of toys with you so that they have something to do so whilst you are looking around. The longer they are left without being entertained, the higher the risk of them getting irritable.
- Have something fun planned for afterwards so you can reward them for their good behaviour. I, for example, let Maicen take a ride on the merry go round in the town centre.
- Take a list with you and have a little think about how many of each item you think you’ll need to get through the school week comfortably. It prevents both over and under buying.
Who knew that a school uniform could be so expensive?! Nearly £300 later, we managed to get everything. Kam had the shock of his life when I told him how much it cost. Welcome to the real world I hear you say! All in all it was a great day and I loved spending quality time with Maicen. He amazes me all the time and I’m so lucky to be his mummy.